I was lucky to get a ticket to an excellent lecture by Leon Lobo of the National Physical Laboratory – ‘Only a matter of time’ – How time has infiltrated different industries and why it is important to a micro second level. This lecture was partly to celebrate 60 years since Louis Essen developed his atomic clock.
All attendees were presented with a copy of Louis Essen’s memoirs. I love reading about the history behind mathematical or scientific advances. This book includes gems such as when Albert Einstein gave a lecture at the National Physical Laboratory and someone had to lend him £5 because he had no money! Also noteworthy is that the great Alan Turing was developing a computer at NPL after the war – he just happened to cross paths with Essen, and repeated a key correction factor calculation for him, doing it far more elegantly and rigorously using waveguide theory.